Bank of America Practices Force Homeowners to Face Foreclosure

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact
Cynthia Martinez, Communications Director ▪ 512.374.2764 ▪ cmartinez@trla.org

AUSTIN, Texas – June 30, 2010 – Fifteen low-income Texans are suing Bank of America for operating a home loan system that forces struggling homeowners into foreclosure by purposefully misleading them, preventing them from modifying their loans, and ignoring agreements for lower monthly payments.

Represented by Texas RioGrande Legal Aid (TRLA), the leading provider of legal aid in Texas, the families allege that they tried to work with Bank of America on loan modifications and foreclosure prevention when tough economic times hit. Instead of providing them with the information necessary to save their homes, Bank of America provided inconsistent information, lost important paperwork, and failed to notify them of the status of their loans.  In cases where forbearance and loan modification agreements were made, Bank of America ignored the arrangements and put homes up for foreclosure even though families made their payments.

“These families were acting responsibly to try to save their homes,” said TRLA attorney Molly Rogers.  “But with every bit of contact, Bank of America put up roadblocks to prevent them from succeeding.”

Among the families named in the lawsuit is Austin resident Donna Batts.  After applying for a loan modification in June 2009, Batts found herself facing foreclosure.  TRLA helped Batts arrange a forbearance agreement to save her home.  But even though she made payments according to that agreement, she received conflicting information as to the status of her loan.  In March Batts’ mortgage payment was rejected and she was told her home was in foreclosure.  Shortly thereafter she received a letter from Bank of America telling her to continue to make her payments or risk losing her home. While Batts still resides in her home, she continues to receive conflicting information as to the status of her loan and the steps necessary to avoid foreclosure.

According to the lawsuit, it is standard practice for Bank of America to ignore agreements made with homeowners in order to force them into foreclosure. In addition, Bank of America intentionally provides homeowners with misleading and inconsistent information about their loans, illegally ignores requests for information, and sets up unreasonable barriers to keep families from saving their homes.

Added Rogers, “No matter what families do, Bank of America is determined to foreclose on these homes. A struggling family doesn’t stand a chance against them.”

Established in 1970, Texas RioGrande Legal Aid, Inc. (TRLA) is a nonprofit organization that provides free civil legal services to low-income and disadvantaged clients in a 68-county service area. TRLA’s mission is to promote the dignity, self-sufficiency, safety and stability of low-income Texas residents by providing high-quality civil legal assistance and related educational services.

###

2 thoughts on “Bank of America Practices Force Homeowners to Face Foreclosure

  1. It is incredible to see just how out of touch our main stream media is.

    I have been researching the Mortgage predatory lending market for some time now, gathering a whole bunch of dirt on Angelo Mozilo, David Sambol, Kurland and others at Countrywide Home Loans. I uncovered more than a little dirt on Bank of America and its CEO Kenneth Lewis. But what moved me the most was coming across this Lone Ranger like character named David Merritt.

    This is a guy who got suckered into one of those Countrywide Predatory loans. He and his wife are first time home buyers who wanted to put 5 to 10 % down on their $729,000 home in Silicon Valley California – 2 miles from Yahoo headquarters, 4 from google and 5 from Apple.

    With just 2 days to remove their loan contingency, and with at least two other lenders ready to sell them a relatively decent mortgage, Countrywide talked them out of going with the competition by presenting a 1 to 3 percent, FHA Good Faith Estimate and declared: “if you can find someone to beat this loan, then go with them and we’ll pay the closing costs.”

    Countrywide staff were trained on how to determine how much knowledge a home buyer had, and they knew that the Merritts were suckers to be taken. Once they fired the other lenders and committed themselves to Countrywide, the Merritts found themselves locked into a 100% financing Pay Option ARM and HELOC which was destined to charged them over 2 million dollars. Countrywide had a policy of talking buyers out of putting down payments, and convincing them that they would give them a loan that was better. In fact, they would always tell home buyers that No One Could beat them and the truth was that they did beat everyone at the application stage in order to remove all the competition, but they left out that by the time the home buyer was closing escrow, most competitors would have done better.

    The Merritts signed a loan that was charging twice as much as the average lender. What is more is that they signed a loan which Countrywide assigned Mortgage Electronic Registration System as a lender. As it turns out, MERS was designed to be a front company which allows: 1) Note holders to hide from public scrutiny; 2) the duplication of one loan note that could be sold off to 2 or more investors or mortgage backed security pools: 3) evasion of paying local recorder fees; 4) Overriding state legislatures recording the laws on recording liens, beneficiaries and holders in due course; 5) attacking Public Policy in regards to its goals of protecting consumers and lenders from fraud via recording laws; and last, but not least, 6) being a conduit for billions of dollars to pass right by Uncle Sam and into Cayman or Canadian banks where no federal taxes can touch it.

    This is how Countrywide rose to the top. And they intentionally targeted elderly, minorities and unsophisticated first time buyers.

    Now in July 2008 Bank of America bought Countrywide out for 2 billion dollars. A company with assets that exceeded 20 billion, and servicing machine that churned out billions more.

    Bank of America went to all the states Attorneys Generals and asked them to bring lawsuits on behalf of their state citizens against Countrywide and to already agree to cut a sweet settlement deal with Bank of America. This was a strategy to persuade that Public that BofA was sincere about cleaning up the mess Mozilo and cronies created. But what is left out is that they are also trying to cut off home buyers ability to charge BofA with the predatory loans of Countrywide.

    Behind the scenes, BofA has been supporting Countrywide since 1969. It has always been in the predatory loan business, but through other front companies. For the longest, evidence shows, Kenneth Lewis was very close allies with Mozilo and planned with him to defraud Americans out of their home equity.

    It is so strange to see so many Americans enslaved to the Banking and Finance gangsters and not even know it, or if they do, just accept it.

    David Merritt is literally one of the 21st Century modern epics “David versus Goliath.” And all the has is a little sling and a rock against Goliaths billion dollar war armor. Check out some of his thoughts on many issues at wordpress.com/insightbeyondsight, but the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has before it Merritt v. Countrywide, BofA, Wells Fargo et al, Docket No 09-17678 where he has charged straight at these Greedsters with RICO and other federal violation. And in Santa Clara Superior Court Merritt v. Mozilo et al No. 109CV159993.

    He is actually looking for other victims who have deeds of trust assigned to MERS and he wishes to help in anyway possible to fight these folks offensively , he prefers, but he has enough information to help defensively as well. Lawyers from around the country taps into this Big David. So circulate the word.

    Mark Doyle

  2. I was reading on chase and their unethical practices. FHA and VA they don’t want it appears. At the bottom of a 900 + page document they don’t right out say …do this! They, like all other banks, you will not get a loan modification unless you show hardship. You need to skip at least 3 for 4 payments. while you think they are going to help a little…within 15 days they have given a notice of default and a substitute trustee, When you feel in your heart something is wrong and send a check, It is returned un touched, their reasoning, Your late with your payments. Then the article states being a government backed loan, they will get what the govenrnment gives him. They will make sooo much more money forcloseing on the loan. Then for the ising on the cake. They are taking the promissary notes and setting Jp Morgan Chase as their new trustee, Up to You how they are able to create 3 more trustees??? When a default is made and they are required to show they have the note. After the note is securizited??? They reattach the note to the loan,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s